So, imagine how shocked I was to pick up the new 10 Magazine and find my blog staring out at me from those thick, shiny-shiny pages? I knew a mention was going in, but I’d imagined a wee screen grab of the homepage, not an entire page and a mini-interview all to myself! It was part of a ten-page feature called Ten blogs/Twitters/mail-outs you should know and here are the ten in full:
Kate Loves Me
Lovely Pelayo’s blog with lots of pictures of himself (well if you look like he does, why not?) and a look at his fashion-faaaabulous life
Last Thursday I attended the Fashion Business Club talk where Vogue.co.uk editor, Dolly Jones interviewed Vogue editor, Alexandra Shulman. Shulman is under intense pressure to deliver a magazine that’s still relevant in the current climate – challenging when your target reader is the person being hit hardest by the recession and advertising revenue is in the doldrums. Yet the lady seated in front of us did not look stressed at all. In fact she came across as extremely likable, good at her job and knowing of her audience, despite having never edited a women’s magazine before arriving at the helm of Vogue 17 years ago.
I’ve condensed her most insightful answers into soundbites, but you can read more here.
On getting the Vogue editor job 17 years ago: “It was the last thing in the world that I wanted to do.”
On fashion as a scapegoat for the world’s ills: “Fashion has become a whipping post for everything from body image to celebrity culture to the economy. The media picks on fashion because it can use fashion pictures to illustrate their stories. A fashion picture looks good so makes you more likely to read the story.”
On how the recession affects Vogue’s shoots: “The emphasis has moved to styling as opposed to photography. I have a great team and their styling tips have become more useful for our readers.” [This is so true, I loved the styling feature in the current issue…]
Tips for up-and-coming designers and what a small business needs to survive: *Product is key – make your message clear *Be consistent in your offering *Press is important but needs to be focussed, it’s not necessary to get celebrity endorsement from the outset *Find a business partner to work with (“if you are going to be a designer, it is a business. You can’t just be an artist.”) *Accept it takes time
On supermodels: “They became too powerful. When the models were getting more attention than the designers, the designers started sourcing Hollywood”
On interns: “I can’t tell if an intern is good at styling or writing from just seeing them around the office but the successful ones are smart, efficient and make an imprint on you without getting in your face and being irritating.”
On the future of fashion magazines: “There’s a lesson to be learnt from what’s happening with newspapers – they’ve killed off the papers in favour of putting content online, yet online isn’t making the money.”
On the magazines she reads: “I read the New Yorker for unbeatable journalism and I love interiors magazines. I get all the magazines so I don’t need to buy them but I look at them to see who’s copied us! I noticed Grazia used our ‘More Dash Than Cash’ idea but called it ‘More Dash, Less Cash’.”
On LOVE: “We were very competitive with Pop so when Conde Nast took on LOVE I wasn’t sure how it would play out. But it’s very different. Its focus is fashion and celebrity, it’s industry-insidery. Ad-wide they’re a lot cheaper than us, but our circulation is 220,000 and they’re aiming for 40,000 so it’s very different.”
On the importance of fashion shows: “Fashion shows are a good marketing tool yet different clothes work in different ways. Sometimes doing catwalk collections sends things on the wrong tangent. It drives me crazy, putting clothes in the magazine that people can’t actually buy.”
Back when the internet first started (let’s say circa 1998* for the sake of argument), Vogue was quick off the mark with its flashy website Vogue.com. It had news, it had runway pics, it had everything. But fast forward a few years and the other glossies are catching up. In 2009 it’s all about the now, now, now and that means blogs and Twitter.
This round of fashion weeks has seen a flurry of activity in the blogosphere with a race to see which fashion glossy can be the quickest, most prolific and most irreverent with their posts.
GRAZIA has the most experience having launched its blog Graziadaily.co.uk in September. Granted, it is a site in itself and has its own (albeit tiny) team while the others are kept going by the magazine staff.
Pluses: Ten posts a day, lots of info and lots of heads-ups on future trends. Plus a Twitter as well! Most on-the-ball.
Minuses: Posts aren’t timed or dated which means it’s tricky to keep track of.
TEN MAGAZINE is lots of fun though slightly clique-y in its ‘we’re here, you’re not’ tone and self-obsessed photos of the team.
Pluses: Daily updates, behind-the-scenes peeks at fashion show fittings
Minuses: Slapdash presentation – some of the runway snaps really are crappy (I know mine aren’t much better but I’m not front row)
LOVE is the most insidery of them all and boy do we know it. Every other pic is a shot of Fran, Katie or the other one mugging for the camera with Roberto, Jeremy or Alber in a headlock. (But I like it really…)
Pluses: The Love crew are the most scene-y of all fashionistas so you get the best view of every show/party/re-see/launch.
Minuses: What happened to the comment facility? A blog without comments is a waste of time, no?
The nice thing about this leaping on the blog bandwagon is it gives a less formal insight into the world of fashion magazines. As the Brits are known for their humour, blogging lends itself particularly well to the antics of our fashion editors – yes we do play dress-up with the samples, we’d be mad not to!
*Obviously I know the internet started before then, but I mean in relevant fashion terms…
UPDATE: Link for Ten Magazine’s blog added courtesy of Helen LG!